It’s still a couple of weeks until Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them hits theatres everywhere, but let’s just admit it, the actual release of the film is pro forma. Plans for the sequel, or rather sequels, to Fantastic Beasts have been well under way for months with screenwriter J.K. Rowling having nearly completed the script for part two, release dates scheduled for parts two and three, and the announcement made by Rowling that there may be as many as five Fantastic Beasts movies before the series is over. So it only makes sense then that producers would start casting for future installments, right?
Deadline is reporting that none other than Johnny Depp will make his magical world of Harry Potter debut in Fantastic Beasts 2, although the site notes that he may also have a “tiny turn” in the initial Fantastic Beasts outing as well. This has lead to immediate speculation that Depp will be filling the big shoes of Gellert Grindelwald, the friend turned adversary of Albus Dumbledore with whom the future Hogwarts headmaster had a famous dual in roughly the same time period as Fantastic Beasts. That last bit is idle speculation, of course, because the exact nature of Depp’s role has yet to be revealed, but playing a wizard would be a first for Depp whose played a vampire, a Native American, a wolf, a French Canadian, a lizard, and a guy with scissors for hands among others.
Career-wise, hitching his wagon to the Harry Potter universe is shrewd move for Depp as he’s looking to move on from what’s been a heckuva bad year for the actor with the bombing of Alice Through the Looking Glass and his very contentious and very public divorce. Coming up though, he’s got the next chapter of Pirates of the Caribbean called Dead Men Tell No Tales, as well as Kenneth Branagh’s Murder on the Orient Express remake and a potential part playing The Invisible Man in Universal’s Monsters Universe.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them comes out on November 18; Fantastic Beasts 2: Fantastic Harder (working title) will be in theatres November 16, 2018.